Monday 22 November 2021

Welcome Party

Cevanne Horrocks Hopayian at 575 Wandsworth Road
Cevanne Horrocks Hopayian at 575 Wandsworth Road 

Composer Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian spent much of 2015-2017 at 575 Wandsworth Road, London, the home of the late Kenyan-born polymath Khadambi Asalache (1935-2006), where her London Symphony Orchestra Soundhub residency took place. She composed works inspired both by the house and its creator, but also by venue's acoustic properties. The results are on display in Horrocks-Hopayian's disc Welcome Party on NMC Records.

On Saturday, Horrocks-Hopayian hosted a welcome party of her own, at Fidelio Cafe, to launch the album. As the album features Girton College Choir, the London Symphony Orchestra and many others, the album launch features new arrangements of works from the disc, performed by vocalist Ziazan, saxophonist Trish Clowes, a string quartet made up of members of the London Symphony Orchestra (Ellie Fagg, Tom Norris, Malcolm Johnston, Laure Le Dantec), and Horrocks-Hopayian herself.

The music varied from a piece that used found sounds from the house, to another which used the acoustics of the house itself, and of course the intricacies of Asalache's fretwork, which Horrocks-Hopayian reflected both in the music and by cutting fretwork into a score (and thus leaving space for Clowes' improvisations). Asalache's own words also featured in two of the numbers.

Full details of Welcome Party from NMC's website. 575 Wandsworth Road is now owned by the National Trust and will re-open in the Spring.

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